The strategy de jour is Zero RB, where you just grab a bunch of running backs late in your draft, or aggressively off the waiver wire during the season, and hope you will be okay. Then there are others who are taking two stud running backs early before hammering wide receivers and tight ends starting in the 3rd or 4th round.
No matter your strategy, once the season starts and injuries start mounting with your guys dropping like flies, you need a plan in place, not only to weather the storm but to thrive. Many people don't like drafting handcuffs, I get that, that is a totally valid position to take, and this article is not for you. But for those that do like to back up their running backs, for those people who don’t want to be biting their nails as the waiver wire runs late on Wednesday evenings, this is for you.
Fantasy Football is all about gaining an advantage over your opponent and about securing week-to-week consistency from your players, especially in season-long, head-to-head leagues. Over the years I have employed a running back strategy I like to call "2-2-1," which helps you do just that and can actually be instituted with any drafting order strategy, including Zero RB. In fact, it can help complement such strategies.
With the NFL moving to more of a passing league and with many fantasy leagues favoring a point per reception (PPR) format, scoring from the wide receiver position is becoming more valuable and reliable. That is not to say that you should neglect the running back position. Quite the opposite; it is essential to have a sound strategy to ensure you will be secure at the position throughout the season while spending valuable draft picks on other positions. In fact, making sure to have proper week-to-week scoring from the running back position is paramount. You want to ensure some value each week from the running back slot while generating greater production at the others. This is how you win your league these days. In the spirit of full disclosure, it's not a strategy I use in every draft, but it’s a strategy I keep in my back pocket to pull out if the draft unfolds in a way where I find it to be useful. This season I have actually found myself employing it in a few industry leagues where benches are deep and scoring systems favor positions outside of running backs.